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Media The Courts The Internet Your Rights Online Usenet Indexing Trial Set To Begin Next Week 76

An anonymous reader writes "Only a few weeks after a jury acquitted Alan Ellis, the owner of the BitTorrent site 'OinK's Pink Palace,' of copyright infringement, another high profile case is about to start next week, this time for the newsgroup side of things. The MPA (Motion Picture Association) trial against, a website that indexes NZB files and content on the newsgroups, will begin in London on Monday. Will lightning strike twice in favor of website indexing?" Torrentfreak points out one major difference between the cases: "Ellis’s charge was one of fraud, allegedly conducted by an individual and dealt with under criminal law, while that leveled against Newzbin is one of allowing and inducing illegal copying, i.e copyright infringement, but carried out by a bona fide company under civil law."
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  • Sigh (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Andorin ( 1624303 ) on Sunday January 31, 2010 @01:18PM (#30971362)
    Unlike, say, The Pirate Bay, will apparently cooperate with takedown requests. Yet they're getting sued anyway.

    Way to be a shining example of rationality there, MPA.
  • by mister_playboy ( 1474163 ) on Sunday January 31, 2010 @01:56PM (#30971676)

    Why are all these cases aimed at people who merely index content? Filehosters like Rapidshare and Megaupload are not only actually hosting and distributing the files themselves, but their whole business revolves around copyright infringement. People pay for premium service to download more illegal stuff faster, and they generate so much ad money from high traffic only because of the infringing files they make available. Finally, they would be a more logical target for civil suit since they actually have money to loose.

    I have no sympathy for either of the *AAs and I understand some of these points apply to other sites to some extent, but I don't understand why they choose to overlook the juiciest targets.

  • by nurb432 ( 527695 ) on Sunday January 31, 2010 @02:38PM (#30972100) Homepage Journal

    Why are all these cases aimed at people who merely index content?

    Because its easier to show in the court what is going on ' look, the have this web page here that says you can download xyz'. And then present pretty graphics to the judge. Trying to explain packets and p2p clients would be harder and risky.

    And if they shut down 99% of the public sites, they have succeeded in their task. They know they cant ever stop the hardcore, but if they can get to the casual down loader, they will be happy.

  • by misexistentialist ( 1537887 ) on Sunday January 31, 2010 @03:59PM (#30972974)
    Legal fantasies of "intent" and "enabling" are problematic for index sites, but Rapidshare just operates servers, which the law of the universe declares legal. The copyright holders therefore are working to force storage providers and ISPs to start making indexes, because storing, distributing, and indexing pirated material is definitely illegal. (See []) That this requires universal censorship is of no concern to corporations and the politicians that obey them.
  • by furbyhater ( 969847 ) on Sunday January 31, 2010 @05:46PM (#30974162)

    If indexing is a crime, then it is only a very very small step ... Keep walking down that path, and soon we loose all our digital freedoms...

    Massive exaggeration? Newsbin handpicks warez (or even posts them themselves), then creates nzb files and garnishes them with detailed descriptions, only to charge a small fee from everyone who wants access to their "catalog". Quite different from a simple aggregator. The proliferation of NZBs is destroying the usenet community (most current usenet lusers have probably never even read a group. It's just something equivalent to rapidshare to them, but with moar 1334).

  • Re:Sigh (Score:3, Interesting)

    by rdnetto ( 955205 ) on Sunday January 31, 2010 @11:32PM (#30976952)

    Mininova also complied with takedown requests. They got sued, and now they're effectively dead.

The only possible interpretation of any research whatever in the `social sciences' is: some do, some don't. -- Ernest Rutherford